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View gfadvm's profile

Sealer For MDF?

by gfadvm
posted 03-10-2012 12:35 AM


24 replies so far

View DonnyBahama's profile

DonnyBahama

215 posts in 1186 days


#1 posted 03-10-2012 12:42 AM

Hi, Andy! I think what most people do is top it off with a sacrificial sheet of 1/8th inch Masonite.

-- Founding member of the (un)Official LumberJock's Frugal Woodworking Society - http://lumberjocks.com/topics/29451

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6938 posts in 1569 days


#2 posted 03-10-2012 12:49 AM

Johnson’s Paste Wax, cheap and works well.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1455 posts in 1016 days


#3 posted 03-10-2012 01:14 AM

Varathane waterborne poly for floors.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

View Howie's profile

Howie

2656 posts in 1578 days


#4 posted 03-10-2012 01:21 AM

I used poly on mine then like Mike says,Wax it.

-- Life is good.

View Sawkerf's profile

Sawkerf

1730 posts in 1724 days


#5 posted 03-10-2012 01:23 AM

I use water based poly – often whatever is in the can from projects. About once a year, I scrape it down and give it a fresh coat.

-- Adversity doesn't build character...................it reveals it.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10874 posts in 1345 days


#6 posted 03-10-2012 01:26 AM

Mike, The wax would be easiest but I was comcerned that MDF will just soak up wax like a sponge? No finish under the wax? Donnie, Glad to hear you’re up right and taking air.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View bugz's profile

bugz

773 posts in 1319 days


#7 posted 03-10-2012 01:29 AM

Andy, I have alot of mdf counter tops in my shop and I put a couple coats of poly on it. You can hit any glue stuck to it, after it drys, with a puddy knife and it peels up. The nice thing about poly is you can scuff it up, hit it with a sander and recoat it and it looks like new. I have built several roll around tool boxes and I put a piece of 1/4” hard masonite on top, so it is easily replaced. Also coated that with poly. Then just plain old johnson floor wax.

-- Bob, Lewistown, Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

View lizardhead's profile

lizardhead

518 posts in 1497 days


#8 posted 03-10-2012 01:31 AM

I covered mine with a clear sheet of Plexiglas, I just use a 1-1/4” chisel to remove any glue, trust me I use it a lot

-- Lizardhead---Yeah but it's a dry heat--Tempe, Az

View Roger's profile

Roger

14592 posts in 1459 days


#9 posted 03-10-2012 01:37 AM

I know both water base poly, Johnsons paste wax are gr8. glue comes right off. @lizardhead: plexi? hummm sounds interesting.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10874 posts in 1345 days


#10 posted 03-10-2012 02:11 AM

Thaks for all the quick input. I guess poly won the contest. Now, how many coats should I apply? I think I’ll use water based as I have some that I will never use otherwise (and it should dry quicker).

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View vonhagen's profile

vonhagen

483 posts in 1020 days


#11 posted 03-10-2012 02:32 AM

you could use formica and just contact cement it on and nothing will stick to it but you must use a backer on the other side so it wont warp. my main work bench is 1 3/4×6 poplar frame with 3/4 mdf with standard grade formica and i just use saw horses and level it with shims and it also works on the floor as a nice level flat surface to mock up large pieces. never use wax on your work surface as it will transfer to your wood and screw up your finish

-- no matter what size job big or small do a job right or don't do it at all.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10874 posts in 1345 days


#12 posted 03-10-2012 03:02 AM

Hey Blaine, My workbench is covered with Formica and I love it but don’t want to spend $50 to cover this table so Polyacrylic looks like the plan for tomorrow.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Roger's profile

Roger

14592 posts in 1459 days


#13 posted 03-10-2012 04:03 AM

I’d say at least 3. my $.02

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View vonhagen's profile

vonhagen

483 posts in 1020 days


#14 posted 03-10-2012 04:33 AM

go poly

-- no matter what size job big or small do a job right or don't do it at all.

View Helkat's profile

Helkat

74 posts in 951 days


#15 posted 03-10-2012 02:43 PM

I used Spar urethane on mine, about 3 coats as is got sucked in pretty good by the mdf. At the time I was in a basement that flooded regularly, and I was concerned about it sucking up moisture and expanding over time so I did all sides.

Still holding up good for me.

-- Nat, UPstate NY, http://www.cordlessimpactdriverhq.com/

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

1790 posts in 1148 days


#16 posted 03-10-2012 05:47 PM

I’ll suggest an alternative to a film finish. What I used on mine was a Blo/turp/beeswax finish. Glue (and finishes) pop right off, doesn’t flake/peel, and is easily renewed. My assembly table is an MDF torsion box, and even though it’s only used for assembly (and finishing) it still gets quite a bit of abuse. Read more about this here if you think t might be of interest. This article advocates this for a workbench, but it’s just as applicable to an assembly table.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, we sent 'em to Washington.

View Roger's profile

Roger

14592 posts in 1459 days


#17 posted 03-10-2012 10:37 PM

very interesting Fred. thnx for the link

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Kentuk55@bellsouth.net

View Chipy's profile

Chipy

374 posts in 1248 days


#18 posted 03-10-2012 11:54 PM

Poly or paste wax.

View Jordan Curcio's profile

Jordan Curcio

13 posts in 920 days


#19 posted 03-14-2012 02:39 AM

I don’t think paste wax will be very much help. I would use a high build poly if you just want to seal the mdf, but the best way would be to laminate it with formica. My assembly table is actually just 3/4” melamine. Glue scrapes right off of it, and when it gets ruined, all I have to do is flip it over. And best of all, It’s cheap!

View waho6o9's profile

waho6o9

4925 posts in 1232 days


#20 posted 03-14-2012 03:10 AM

poly then paste wax.

View Martyroc's profile

Martyroc

2708 posts in 961 days


#21 posted 03-14-2012 03:17 AM

Minwax water based poly, dries quick and easily repaired. I have used water baseed ploys and stains recently and been pleasantly surprised. My daughter likes to spend time with me in the shop building, and to put it in her words regarding oil based stains, ” daddy that stuff is Stinky”! Need less to say I was skeptical but it’s been working well. Maybe I’m clouded by being able to have my daughter enjoy my hobby with me, who knows?

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10874 posts in 1345 days


#22 posted 03-14-2012 03:33 AM

Hey guys, It’s done. I used 5 coats of Polycrylic and waiting for it to fully cure (not sure how long that is) before deciding whether to wax it or not. I don’t want wax contaminating my wood or finish.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View davidroberts's profile

davidroberts

1002 posts in 2141 days


#23 posted 03-14-2012 04:23 AM

shellacy by cracky

-- God is great, wood is good. Let us thank Him for wood......and old hand tools.

View Loren's profile

Loren

7556 posts in 2303 days


#24 posted 03-14-2012 05:33 AM

MDF surfaces are very water resistant. The edges are very porous.

Pour water on a piece of MDF and it will just pool there for a long time
and may run off if the piece is not flat. I know this from leaving
pieces out in the rain. It is not like particle board in this respect.
It does not take glue especially well without sanding. The surfaces
are treated with heat and pressure or something and are kind
of like masonite, but not so tough. Wax would, I expect, be
sufficient to make the surface glue resistant enough to pop off
dried glue with a chisel.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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